Social Security Disability (SSD) is a government benefits program available to those who are unable to work due to a disabling health or medical condition that is expected to last more than one year or result in death. Most people tend to associate SSD with a physical ailment that prevents someone from working such as a back injury or a terminal illness like cancer, but there are also a number of mental health conditions or impairments that specifically are included among the medical conditions that enable someone to qualify for SSD benefits. By their very nature, mental health impairments are more difficult to prove, both in terms of their existence as well as their severity, given that symptoms often are subjective and there is no way to truly measure whether and to what degree an SSD applicant has depression, anxiety or another mental impairment. Unlike cancer or a similar type of medical condition, there is no blood test for depression or anxiety.
Nevertheless, this does not make it impossible to qualify for SSD benefits based on the applicant’s mental impairment. Indeed, according to one source, nearly ¼ of SSD recipients have a mental health condition or impairment as the primary health condition for which the individual is receiving SSD benefits. Therefore, the lack of a “physical” diagnosis or condition is far from a disqualifying factor for being approved from SSD benefits if you are suffering from a mental health condition or impairment. It simply takes the rights records and information to be supplied to the Social Security Administration (SSA) in order to successfully qualify for SSD benefits based upon a mental health condition or impairment. An experienced SSD attorney like the attorneys of Kalfus & Nachman can assist you in successfully obtaining SSD benefits based upon a mental health impairment, just as we have done with numerous individuals in the past.
Mental Health Impairments and SSD Benefits
Society sometimes tends to view mental health impairments or conditions as somehow reflecting weakness or a failing on the part of the afflicted person to function normally. However, any psychiatrist or psychologist will tell you that mental health conditions or impairments are just as real as a “physical” medical condition like diabetes or cancer.
Nevertheless, depression, anxiety, and other similar mental health impairments can actually be objectively verified. This is traditionally done through not only the reports of the symptoms from the person suffering from these conditions as well as the length that the SSD applicant has suffered from those symptoms. It can further also be shown through the records of the treatment that the person suffering from the mental impairment is receiving or has received. If a person has been treated for years by a psychiatrist, then there is a pretty good bet that person has a mental impairment. Similarly, if someone is and has been seeking counseling or therapy for a long period of time, then the chances are good there will be records from this treatment. Those records will in turn reflect the consistency with which someone has been suffering from a mental health condition. This is why the SSA approves applications for SSD benefits based upon mental impairments and mental health conditions; because they are just as real as any other medical condition someone may suffer from.
Talk to The Experienced Social Security Disability Attorneys at Kalfus & Nachman
The experienced SSD attorneys at Kalfus & Nachman have represented numerous claimants who are applying for benefits solely on the basis of a mental health condition or impairment. We have encountered SSA examiners who are inexperienced in evaluating such claims given their often unique nature, but we have successfully pursued claims for SSD benefits on behalf of those who were suffering from mental health conditions or impairments that left them unable to work. If you live in the Norfolk, Hampton, Newport News, Portsmouth, Virginia Beach or Roanoke, Virginia, areas and need assistance determining if you qualify for the SSD benefits, what your expected monthly benefit would be if you qualify for benefits, filing your SSD application, or filing an appeal, please contact Kalfus & Nachman PC by phone at (855) 880-8163 or through the form on this page to schedule a free consultation.